Wedding centerpieces are a very important aspect of the wedding reception tables. Here we’ll provide you with some basic tips and ideas for DIY options as well as store-bought pieces that you can include for the table. However you decide to create these decorations, they’ll be a spotlight on your big day!
Top Wedding Centerpieces Ideas
1. Talk to a Professional
Need some help getting started? Lookup a wedding decorator near you. These decorators can provide you with ideas to help make your dreams a reality. They’ll help you stick to your budget and offer solutions to problems you might encounter. Be sure to look at a few different decorators and their prices to find the right one for you.
2. Go to a Local Antique Store
Local shops have many great wedding centerpieces to choose from. Most of them are inexpensive and thrifted. Some options that a lot of antique stores have are candelabras or silver platters. Another idea is to use vintage books or dishes! There are endless options to find at antique stores, you are sure to find something that matches your interests or theme!
Flowers are traditionally used as wedding centerpieces in receptions. To add some creativity to the tradition, try experimenting with different styles and sizes of glass vases and containers. Try long and thin, short and fat, or a curvy vase. These will add a whole new look to the flowers you’ve chosen. Additionally, consider how these flowers will be placed to create the perfect wedding centerpieces. For example, use shorter vases on dining tables and save the tall vases for serving tables. This allows guests to chat with those on the opposite side without having to crane their neck around a towering arrangement!
4. Visit your Local Wood Shop
Many carpenters will cut cheap round wood bases that you can use for your centerpieces. This is great for an outdoorsy couple or a woodsy theme. These bases can be a perfect way to add texture to your centerpiece, and are great for layering! Consider adding candles or table numbers on top. Another idea we love is to use the wood itself to create table numbers. The options for using wood scraps in your centerpieces are endless, but are sure to add a tasteful rustic touch!
5. Table Numbers
Have some wine glasses lying around? Use ‘em! Take some empty wine bottles and paint designated numbers on them. Place colored stones and pebbles at the bottom of each bottle. Nestle a tea light in decorative stones to mimic a real candle. This serves as a beautiful way to number the tables for guests.
The combination of candles and flowers makes for an elegant and sophisticated pairing! Candles should match the main color (or serve as an accent) of your wedding. Additionally, purchase candle holders from a local craft or antique store and paint the exterior with fun patterns. You can also surround the candles with a wreath of flowers that match the bouquet to tie in the color scheme!
A modern twist on a traditional candle look can be to create floating candles! Fill up a cute bowl or jar with water about halfway, and stick a small tea candle in the middle. This will look stunning at night, especially, creating a romantic ambiance!
Fruit can be an eye catching addition for your tables! One idea we love is to place a fruit bowl of fresh fruit for your guests to eat on each table. It is perfect for guests to enjoy a sweet, healthy treat, especially if they have dietary restrictions that may prevent them from eating some of the entree. We suggest shopping your local farmer’s market to support small farmers and provide your guests something more than just what they could find at the grocery store. This adds a pop of color to your tables, but after they enjoy the fruit, you have less clean up to do!
Many guests enjoy lemonade, especially during a summer wedding! Consider filling jars or vases full of lemon slices for a pop of color! It will pair well with a jar of fresh lemonade for your guests to enjoy!
Everybody has played the game Scrabble! Take various Scrabble letters from the game and glue together 5-letter words that spell out themes from your wedding. Possible phrases might be “bride, groom, rings, guest, lover, etc.” This will create a square that can serve as a coaster and be taken home by your guests after the wedding.
Especially if you’re planning a winter wedding, get festive! Either make your own glittery and white ornaments or use ones you already have. Place them in a bowl together and let the sparkles make the table shine. These can also be used on non-winter weddings by painting the ornament balls to match your wedding colors.
Lanterns are perfect for an evening reception. They create a romantic setting for every table. You don’t have to use real lanterns. Battery-powered lanterns can be bought in bulk online. You can also find lanterns at thrift or antique stores! Another similar option could be birdcages! This is also a unique place to hold candles, flowers, feathers, and more. Buying secondhand is a great option for the environment, and gives you an opportunity to find many different styles to make each table unique and special!
11. Mason Jars
Mason jars are one of those classic table wedding centerpieces. These can be bought in bulk and dressed up. Buy some twine and some small stones to wrap around and fill your mason jar. Place a small candle in them and they look perfect. You can either do it yourself or commission someone to do this for you.
12. Flowers and Greenery
Flowers are classic table centerpieces. Real flowers can be pricey and hard to keep fresh so opt for fake flowers. You can make these yourself at a local craft store or commission a professional to do this. Pick flowers that go with your theme or season.
There are many floral options, so you can personalize this just for you! If you are having a fall wedding, choose popular autumn colored flowers, such as burgundy, orange, and gold. Golden flowers will add a bright, but tasteful, touch to your centerpiece. Another stunning addition to your arrangement could be white hydrangeas! This adds a different texture that will be stunning. Wanting to keep it simple? Stick with just pink or red roses in unique vases. This is an elegant touch your guests are sure to enjoy!
If you aren’t a flower person, consider greenery or other natural alternatives! Succulents are a great idea for a desert-style wedding in particular. Using various colored succulents add a pop of color to your tables. Succulents are also typically shorter than many flowers or other greenery, so they would allow your guests to chat across the table easily!
Having a tropical wedding? Consider using monstera leaves! Your guests will get to enjoy a trip to Central America, right at your table, no matter where the wedding may be taking place! Olive branches, eucalyptus, and other garland-style greenery would also add gorgeous texture to tables as a non-floral option. Add in lavender to add a pop of purple and keep your tables smelling fresh! These greens would pair perfectly with some simple candles for a simple, romantic, natural look!
Have your party favors be your centerpiece. Some couples have little personalized candles, deck of cards, candies, or bottles of maple syrup for their guests to take home. Have these out on a platter. Or, consider making them the decor itself! We love the idea of having many small potted plants or succulents as decoration and encouraging your guests to take one home with them. It can be a simple way to say “thank you” to your guests for attending your special day! This helps with clean up as well and can help reduce waste.
Thrift stores will often have many different sizes, shapes, and colors of vases or glassware. This might be perfect for a wedding on a budget. If you prefer a more uniform look between the tables, buy glasses in bulk online! If you place these glasses in the center of the table, it will create a perfect eclectic aesthetic for your wedding.
15. Dessert Platter
A dessert platter can be placed in the center of each table for guests to enjoy throughout the course of the night. Consult your local bakery for cookie platter options. This can be a perfect way to express your heritage and culture with your favorite ethnic treats. Italian weddings often have biscotti and coffee served after or before the main meal. A more simple choice could be individually wrapped chocolates or caramels! Your guests will love a sweet treat as they celebrate you! No matter what you choose, we recommend personalizing the food to share what you love with the people you love!
Guests will love something to snack on while sitting and conversing at the tables. Event coordinators might even encourage this to ensure your visitors don’t get hungry while waiting for dinner. Fill colorful bowls with fruits, snacks, or one of your favorite munchies. Make sure you take into account the number of people at each table and offer 2-3 different snacks. Don’t forget to be mindful of allergies/dietary restrictions and carefully label each treat!
Guests enjoy looking at photos of the happy couple, making them perfect wedding decorations! Even better, photos are also extremely affordable so they are an easy addition to your setup. Choosing a variety of pictures to place on the tables will encourage guests to walk around and enjoy each memory. Choose fun frames from an antique or craft store to create more of an eye-catching display!
Now that you have been given 17 fantastic ideas for wedding centerpieces, you will be able to wow your guests with your creativity. Be sure to stay true to you and your style, after all it is your wedding. Good Luck!
Written by Chelsea Muzar, Caitlin Connell, and Alyssa Campen